I bought this game because of the apparent similarities to Bang! (my family really enjoys playing Bang!).
The construction quality of this game is great. The box itself is quite sturdy and will be able to take a beating (for example: repeatedly pulling it off the game shelf, bringing it on vacation, etc.). The cards are also strong and the artwork is appealing. The resilience (hearts) and honor (star flower) chips are cardboard cutouts and are probably the weakest piece of construction in the game. We actually had a few minor tears in the chips while popping them out of the larger piece of cardboard they are packed in. These chips are not handled enough during the game to cause worry for further damage, but it is still one of my lone gripes with the game.
The instruction manual is easy to read and understand. If you are completely new to this type of game, then it will only take a few turns before everyone has a strong grasp of it. If you are familiar with Bang!, then you should be able to jump in easily (although there are some major differences between the two games).
Many other excellent reviews for this game explain in much better terms than I ever could the differences between Samurai Sword and Bang!, so i will keep this short. The main difference being, Samurai Sword ends when the first player is knocked out. This eliminates the awful experience of sitting around and watching while everyone is having fun for players who are eliminated early in Bang!.
For this reason, my family will continue to play Samurai Sword while Bang! will collect dust on the shelf.
I highly recommend you pick this game up, you will not regret it.
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From the Manufacturer
In the land of the Rising Sun, faithful Samurai protect the Shogun. Now, a lone Ronin is plotting his revenge. Will you honor the way of the warrior? Put down your Colts and take up your katanas in Samurai Sword, the latest addition to the Bang! family of card games!